Take That Step

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Joshua 3:1-17

TO CHEW ON: Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap .... So the people crossed over opposite Jericho.” Joshua 3:15,16

Excitement filled the air. Today was the day! After living in the desert and in tents for forty years, walking miles in the heat, sleeping in the cold, eating only manna for as long as they could remember, the Israelites would enter Canaan, their new home.

People made manna sandwiches and filled up water skins. They packed their clothes and tools, rolled up their tents and got in line. The priests who carried the ark led the way.

But there was one HUGE – problem. In order to enter Canaan, they had to cross the Jordan River which was wide and fast-flowing. How would they do it?

“Tell the priests to keep walking toward the river,” God told Joshua.

When the priests were nearly at the water’s edge, God gave the next instruction. “Tell the priests to step in the river and stand there.”

So even though the river was wide and swift, and there was no bridge, boat or raft in sight, the priests carrying the ark did as Joshua said. And an incredible thing happened. As soon as the priests stepped into the water, it stopped flowing! By the time the first people got to where the priests were, there was a path. Everyone walked through the river on dry ground.

Walking through on dry land - Artist unknown

Joshua didn’t know how God’s instructions would turn out. But he said what God told him to say anyway. The priests didn’t know that when they stepped into the river that it would stop flowing. But they stepped in anyway. By doing what God told them to do even though they didn’t know what would happen next, they showed their faith in God.

Are you praying for something that seems as impossible as crossing a river without a bridge or boat? Remember, God can make that impossible thing happen. And if God has told you to do something to answer that prayer, show your faith in Him by doing what He says.

PRAYER: Dear God, please give me the faith obey You, even when it means stepping into the unknown. Amen.

MORE: Remember the manna

All the time they were in the desert, God had fed the Israelites with manna. Then one day shortly after the Israelites entered Cannan, there wasn’t any! (Joshua 5:11,12) Why? Because now there was lots of other food to eat – like grain, fruit and honey. The need for manna was past.

I’m sure, though, that sometimes during those years in the desert, the people thought they’d be stuck eating manna forever. They were wrong of course. God brought them to a time and place where they didn't need manna any more.

Are there things in your life that seem to be going on forever? List them. Now when you are tempted to worry that they’ll never end, remember how God ended the manna for the Israelites. He can make things end in your life too.

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